Workout Safety Tips

New Equipment  blog pic 1Workout Safety Tips

There is no question that regular workouts can help you live a longer, healthier life. However, too many people end up sabotaging their workout routine by not following some basic safety tips, resulting in injuries that may end their routine almost as soon as it begins. By following these simple tips, you can not only keep your workout safe, but actually make it more effective as well.

Start Out Slowly

You do not want to start your exercise routine too hard, too fast or too soon. The best tip for beginning a workout routine is to start slowly with light to moderate exercise for no more than 20 minutes for three days per week. As your strength improves, increase the length of the routine and the number of days you exercise gradually in order to avoid injury.

Warm Up and Cool Down

Warm up exercises, such as stretches, increase the blood flow to your muscles, loosening them and increasing the flow of oxygen. This also increases body temperature, which benefits muscle contractions. Warm up should cause perspiration but should not be exhausting and should be between five and ten minutes long. The cool down after a workout is designed to decrease the aerobic intensity and return your body to a state of rest. For example, after a jog, gradually slow to a walk in the last three minutes of your run to get your heart rate back to normal and follow this with stretching the muscle groups used during the workout.

Eat and Drink Before

Although you do not want to workout after a heavy meal, your body needs nutrition in order to get the most out of the routine. Eat a piece of fruit or a protein bar within two hours of your workout in order to provide your body with some fuel. In addition, be sure to drink up to 16 ounces of water in the two hours prior to your workout and be sure to drink water throughout the routine to replenish fluid lost due to perspiration.

Rest Days

Another mistake many people make when starting an exercise routine is to workout seven days per week. Your body needs rest days in between workouts in order to recuperate from the strain placed on muscles, tendons and joints during your routine. Your immune system does a pretty good job of repairing those strains, but only if you give it time to catch up. By not planning rest days, you risk injury as your immune system cannot repair small sprains or tears. In addition, areas that are strained can become flooded with fluid, reducing their ability to move properly and cause further injury. One way that some athletes address rest days is by working different muscles on different days, taking one day per week away from all exercise.

Dress Properly

Although you don’t have to dress like a fashion model when you hit the gym, you should wear clothing that fits the exercise you plan to do. To keep yourself cool and dry, choose workout wear that offers wicking, or draws the sweat from your body. When exercising in cold weather, layer your clothing. One of the most important things to consider is the type of shoe that is best suited for your workout. If you plan to start running, choose shoes designed for running, but remember that those shoes may not be the right ones to wear in the gym for weight lifting.

These tips can help you prevent injury no matter what type of workout you choose.

Raise the Vibes

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Have you been to the Barre yet?

Swimming Pool Safety Tips

pool safety pic 2It’s that time of year again, safety season.

While swimming is one of the most enjoyable forms of exercise, and a swimming pool is like an oasis in the summertime, there are certain safety tips you should follow in order to make your swim as safe as it is invigorating.

First of all, congratulations are in order. Your decision to do some laps in the pool is one of the smartest choices you can make because swimming improves your life in every possible way. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) swimmers are half as likely as non-swimmers to die of chronic illness.

Yes, the aerobic workout you get from just 25 minutes in the pool can decrease your risk of illness, and is especially beneficial to people with diabetes and heart disease. Besides being more fun than sweating in a gym, water-based exercise is easier on the joints and muscles, so you can exercise longer without pain or discomfort.

And swimming pools remain one of the last bastions of fun the whole family can enjoy.

You may think you know everything about swimming pool safety, but there is more to learn than, “Don’t run around the pool.”

Here’s a look at some basic safety tips for both adult and child swimmers. Before you take the plunge, keep in mind that about 10 people die from drowning each day in the U.S., and about 30,000 swimmers are rushed to the emergency ward each year with swimming pool chemical injuries like poisoning, dermatitis and conjunctivitis.

  • Check out the pool. In a clean, healthy swimming pool, you should see clearly through to the painted stripes on the bottom, you should smell no chlorine, and you should hear the hum of a filtration system pump. If you detect a strong chemical smell, the pool has poor maintenance.
  • Learn how to swim. If you’re not a good swimmer, why not? It’s never too late to learn. You should also teach your children how to swim.
  • Learn how to perform CPR. Life-saving skills are easy to learn and will serve you well for the rest of your life in poolside emergencies.
  • Protect your skin. Refrain from sitting in the sun without a sunscreen with at least SPF 15. Remember to re-apply the sunscreen after each swim.
  • Don’t run around the pool. It’s still the best advice, along with no horseplay, no gymnastic feats and no diving. Needless to say, all pools and hot tubs need to have childproof fences around them.
  • Watch your kids like a hawk. .Children need to be supervised, monitored and watched every second they are in or near a pool. Death by drowning can be invisible and silent.
  • Strict personal hygiene regimen. Remember to wash your hands after using the bathroom or changing diapers, and always shower before swimming.
  • Bathroom breaks for kids. Take children on bathroom breaks every 45 – 60 minutes, and change diapers in a bathroom, not poolside where bacteria can wash back into the pool.
  • Keep it clean. The chlorine in the swimming pool can only do so much, so avoid the pool when you have diarrhea, any communicable disease or the flu.
  • Keep your mouth shut. Avoid getting pool water in your mouth because swallowing it may cause illness. Even a mouthful can make you sick.

There are 10.4 million residential swimming pools in America. With a bit of preparation and a lot of common sense, they can all be made a little safer this season.

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Jim Harter’s Ultimate Hoops

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Dear Parents:

We are hoping you can join us for our Ultimate Hoops Day Camp less than two weeks away at the Saw Mill Club in Mount Kisco. Just a few spots remain for this small camp offering more opportunity for instruction.


Jim Harter



June 30 – July 3, 2014

Saw Mill Club

77 Kensico Drive
Mount Kisco, NY


For Boys Entering 4th, 5th or 6th Grade Next School Year

Cost: $200 (Shirt, Prizes & Lunch Included)

Time: 11:30 am to 3 pm

Limit of 12 for this camp, so the boys will get great instruction from a coach with 24 years of college coaching experience!

Kids on the Run

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5 Workout Tips for Teen Athletes

teen athletes Blog Photo 1As a teen athlete you need to take care of your body. Part of taking care of your body is working out so you can perform in your sport of choice, but you’ll want to exercise clean and smart, too. We’ve collected five tips that will help you excel in your sport of choice through exercise and overall fitness.

Keep Nutrition in Mind

Working out is an important part of staying healthy, but it is only part of the larger picture. To excel as a student athlete you must eat well, too. Your diet should be well balanced, and utilize both carbs and protein to build a healthy body. Teen bodies are still growing, so you’ll need to eat more than most people. Speak to a doctor or nutritionist about the right diet for your sport and body’s needs.

Remember to Stretch

Before and after each activity it is important to stretch. Take 10 minutes prior to beginning activity to stretch out each muscle group. After you’ve finished intense activity, take time to slow down, and cool your body down before stopping the activity. After you are done, complete the same stretching routine you did before working out. This will help to protect your muscles from injury, and increase flexibility.

Keep a Training Log

Every time you work out, right down what you did, including the number of reps and weights used, if you are doing weight training. Keeping a training log can help you better understand your progress. You can do this by simply writing down the information in a notebook, or you can use one of the many training log programs available for computers and even your cell phone. These logs allow you to input your information and they will calculate your progress.

Take a Day Off and Rest

Rest is important for any athlete, but it is especially important for the growing body of a teen athlete. Experts suggest working one body part at a time, and giving it at least two days to rest after. For example, if you are going to work your legs with weights on Mondays, you shouldn’t do weight work with your legs again until Thursday. The goal of lifting weights is to gain muscle and strength. In order to do this, the body must have time to repair the muscles so they grow.

Recuperation is a necessary part of being a healthy, happy teen athlete. You’ll need to work three types of rest into your workout.

  • Rest for 30 to 90 seconds between weight lifting exercise repetitions and keep each exercise to three sets of 10 to 20 reps.
  • After a workout, give your body 2 to 4 hours to rest. Stretch your body, have something to eat and relax before doing any more strenuous activity.
  • After you work a muscle group give it 48 to 72 hours to rest, so your body can repair your muscles.

Cross Train

Teen athletes can greatly benefit from one day per week of cross training. Cross training, simply put, is adding an activity or exercise into your routine that does not directly relate to your sport, but will help you develop important skills that could be beneficial to your sport of choice. For example, if you are a soccer player, regularly running will help up your endurance. If you are a wrestler, pilates or yoga may help you gain important flexibility that will help you during a match. Cross training will also help your body work muscles you do not work during sport-specific activities, which will help you develop more well-rounded strength.

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